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The Exclusive

Tod’s Throws A Pool Party

Make a splash this summer in this exclusive capsule collection of poolside pieces

Tod’s is synonymous with the Italian summer. It’s practically impossible to imagine one without the other. The brand’s iconic Gommino driving shoe, named after the 133 rubber pebbles or “gommini” embedded in the sole, has become something of a wardrobe staple for well-heeled Italians, many of whom will invest in a new pair every year, wear them through the warmer months and retire them when the leaves begin to fall. To step into a pair of these exquisitely soft suede loafers is to buy into la dolce vita, that idyllic, carefree way of life that is so redolent of Italy in the summer.

The Gommino, launched in the late 1970s, was just the first element of the Tod’s vision of a man at leisure. The brand soon turned its expertise to bags and accessories, and three years ago launched a sumptuous ready-to-wear clothing line characterised by the same dedication to craftsmanship and timeless style that made its loafers such a hit. Tod’s has always made a point of treating the words “made in Italy” as an all-encompassing design philosophy, rather than just a promise of provenance, and its first forays into menswear were a case in point. Slipping into one of the brand’s butter-soft suede jackets, it was quite easy to imagine oneself sipping a spritz on the terrace of the Belmond Splendido as the sun went down over Portofino Harbour, or putting a vintage sports car through its paces on the coastal road to Positano. The whole thing just fizzed with Italian spirit.

This summer, that Italian fantasy shifts to the poolside as Tod’s reveals a new capsule collection, which is available exclusively on MR PORTER. Taking a summer pool party as its inspiration, it comprises a range of lightweight jacketsshirts and T-shirts, with standout items including colourful candy-striped or camouflage-print swim shorts with matching short-sleeved shirts. This is Tod’s, so naturally there are plenty of Gommino loafers, to boot. As the brand’s creative director of menswear, Mr Andrea Incontri, explains, “I wanted to complete the picture of the Tod’s man at leisure, enjoying the summer sunshine.”

As he goes on to describe the collection, that archetypal image of “the Tod’s man” is never far from his thoughts, a reference point that anchors the designs and reminds him at all times of exactly who he is catering to. “He is comfortable in his own skin,” says Mr Incontri. “He carries himself with ease, travels light and keeps it luxuriously simple. He’s a man of the world. When I think of him by day, at the sea or by the pool in Capri, Positano, Miami or wherever the sun may be, an easy shirt and shorts with a pair of coloured Gommini comes to mind.” Mr Incontri may paint a somewhat idealised picture of modern life. But the clothes, as ever, speak for themselves. Clearly, this is a man – and a brand – highly attuned to what men want.